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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

How hybrid cars work

By Marshall Brain

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) Hybrid cars are constantly in the news right now, and for a good reason - they get great gas mileage. But have you ever thought about where the great mileage comes from? Last week I received a question from a reader that gets at the essence of hybrid car technology. The question was, "how can a hybrid car be any more efficient than a normal car, given that the engine has to charge the batteries?" In other words, since the engine has to burn gas to charge the battery anyway, why doesn't the mileage of a hybrid car work out to be the same as a normal car?

To understand the full meaning of this question, it is helpful to explore the technology of hybrid cars for one minute. We can use the Toyota Prius as an example. The Prius has both a small gasoline engine and an electric motor. There is also a battery pack for the motor, a special transmission that lets the engine and the motor work together, and a computer that controls the whole thing.

When you are sitting still in a Prius, for example at a traffic light, the gasoline engine does not need to run at all. By eliminating the idling, you automatically save some gas. If you are traveling slowly in a Prius, for example inching forward in bumper-to-bumper traffic, the electric motor can do the driving and the engine does not need to run. Once you get above 15 MPH, the gas engine kicks in. Also, if you drive for more than a few minutes in bumper-to-bumper traffic, the engine will kick in. In that case the engine is spinning a generator that recharges the batteries.

That last part - the "recharging" part - lies at the heart of the reader's question. If the engine has to run anyway to charge the batteries, then where is the advantage? It's not like the electric motor is moving you for free. And since an engine driving a generator to charge batteries is going to add some waste to the process (both the generator and batteries will lose some power through friction and heat), it seems like the hybrid should get worse mileage than a normal car.

Here is how the Hybrid gains an advantage. First of all, a hybrid car does not ever need to idle. That in itself safes some gas, especially in city driving, because idling is a total waste. The batteries in the Prius can power the air conditioner and the radio when the car is sitting still. Then you have to understand that bumper-to-bumper driving is a huge gas-waster for a normal engine. When you rev the engine up to travel at 5 miles per hour and then stop again, you create the worst possible scenario for a gasoline engine. There is no better way to waste gasoline.

When you drive a hybrid car in bumper-to-bumper traffic and it is time to recharge the batteries, the engine can run at a consistent, optimal speed to spin the generator. There is no revving and stopping. So the engine is always being used as efficiently as possible. That makes a hybrid car like the Prius much more efficient in city driving.

So there are two things automatically working in favor of a hybrid car: 1) no idling, and 2) no more revving and stopping, which means highly efficient engine operation at all times. Now you add to that the fact that the gasoline engine in a hybrid car can be very small and light compared to a normal car engine. That makes the engine more efficient all the way around. Then you add to that the fact that most hybrid cars like the Prius are very aerodynamic. They also have special tires, etc. to make them more efficient. Many hybrid cars use regenerative braking to capture the car's energy during braking and store it in the batteries. Finally, there is the car's computer and display. The display tells the driver when he or she is wasting gas (for example, by accelerating too fast), and this helps the driver do a better job.

When you add all of these things together, you get a car that has much better mileage than a normal car. This is why a Hybrid car like a Prius is able to save so much gasoline.

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Previously:


How sharks work
How mosquitoes work
How diesel engines work
How water towers work
How the Dawn mission works
How Kassam rockets work
How the North American Eagle works
Why aren't we flying to work?
How tofu and soy milk work
How Colony Collapse Disorder works
How airbags work
How the U.S. income tax works
How gum works
How caffeine works
How Daylight Saving Time works
How a cruise missile works
How snow making works

© 2007, How Stuff Works Inc. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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